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  1. Biophysical insults that either reduce barrier function (COVID-19, smoke inhalation, aspiration, and inflammation) or increase mechanical stress (surfactant dysfunction) make the lung more susceptible to atelectrauma. We investigate the susceptibility and time-dependent disruption of barrier function associated with pulmonary atelectrauma of epithelial cells that occurs in acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) and ventilator-induced lung injury (VILI). This in vitro study was performed using Electric Cell-substrate Impedance Sensing (ECIS) as a noninvasive evaluating technique for repetitive stress stimulus/response on monolayers of the human lung epithelial cell line NCI-H441. Atelectrauma was mimicked through recruitment/derecruitment (RD) of a semi-infinite air bubble to the fluid-occluded micro-channel. We show that a confluent monolayer with a high level of barrier function is nearly impervious to atelectrauma for hundreds of RD events. Nevertheless, barrier function is eventually diminished, and after a critical number of RD insults, the monolayer disintegrates exponentially. Confluent layers with lower initial barrier function are less resilient. These results indicate that the first line of defense from atelectrauma resides with intercellular binding. After disruption, the epithelial layer community protection is diminished and atelectrauma ensues. ECIS may provide a platform for identifying damaging stimuli, ventilation scenarios, or pharmaceuticals that can reduce susceptibility or enhance barrier-function recovery.

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  2. null (Ed.)
    Abstract Antimicrobial surface coatings function as a contact biocide and are extensively used to prevent the growth and transmission of pathogens on environmental surfaces. Currently, scientists and researchers are intensively working to develop antimicrobial, antiviral coating solutions that would efficiently impede/stop the contagion of COVID-19 via surface contamination. Herein we present a flavonoid-based antimicrobial surface coating fabricated by laser processing that has the potential to eradicate COVID-19 contact transmission. Quercetin-containing coatings showed better resistance to microbial colonization than antibiotic–containing ones. 
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  3. Staphylococcus aureus (Gram-positive) and Pseudomonas aeruginosa (Gram-negative) bacteria represent major infectious threats in the hospital environment due to their wide distribution, opportunistic behavior, and increasing antibiotic resistance. This study reports on the deposition of polyvinylpyrrolidone/antibiotic/isoflavonoid thin films by the matrix-assisted pulsed laser evaporation (MAPLE) method as anti-adhesion barrier coatings, on biomedical surfaces for improved resistance to microbial colonization. The thin films were characterized by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, infrared microscopy, and scanning electron microscopy. In vitro biological assay tests were performed to evaluate the influence of the thin films on the development of biofilms formed by Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacterial strains. In vitro biocompatibility tests were assessed on human endothelial cells examined for up to five days of incubation, via qualitative and quantitative methods. The results of this study revealed that the laser-fabricated coatings are biocompatible and resistant to microbial colonization and biofilm formation, making them successful candidates for biomedical devices and contact surfaces that would otherwise be amenable to contact transmission. 
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  4. null (Ed.)